Bringing together the analysis of a diverse team of social scientists, this book proposes a new approach to environmental problems. Cutting through the fragmented perspectives on water crises, it seeks to shift the analytic perspectives on water policy by looking at the social logics behind environmental issues. Most importantly, it analyzes the dynamic influences on water management, as well as the social and institutional forces that orient water and conservation policies. The first work of its kind, The Field of Water Policy: Power and Scarcity in the American Southwest brings the tools of Pierre Bourdieu’s field sociology to bear on a moment of environmental crisis, with a study of the logics of water policy in the American Southwest, a region that allows us to see the contest over the management of scarce resources in a context of lasting drought. As such, it will appeal to scholars in the social and political sciences with interests in the environment and the management of natural resources.